Title: Malaren: A Swedish Affair
Author: N. E. David
Publisher: John Hunt Books
Date: November 25th, 2016
Format: physical ARC
Source: from Publisher for a review
Synopsis (from Goodreads): Alan Harrison is a perfectly ordinary, middle-class, middle-aged and happily married man. But when his wife, Susan, suddenly dies, his life starts to disintegrate. Rather than stay at home where the memory of his wife still haunts him, he decides to spend the summer in Sweden at the invitation of his in-laws. On the shores of Lake Malaren, he discovers fresh reasons for living and a contentment he had not previously thought possible. But unexpected guests arrive to disturb his new-found peace and he is forced to take unprecedented steps to recover it. Set against a backdrop of stunning Swedish scenery, MALAREN shows us the redemptive power of physical labour and male bonding as an unlikely hero struggles to overcome his challenges.
I don’t read literary fiction too often, but when I do, I usually always finish a book with a thought how I have just finished the most beautiful book ever.
Really, if you look at all the books I read this year, you’ll notice only few books from that genre, but when it comes to quality, they are all at the very top of my list.
I love literary fiction mainly because of the beautiful writing it is mostly famous for.
My second reason why I love it is because it explores characters on a deeper level.
Finally, my third reason is because it helps reader to improve his vocabulary.
Malaren: A Swedish Affair is a novel pitched as piece of literary fiction that explores man’s inner thoughts and one’s life under stress in exceptional situations.
Honestly, when going into this story, I had no expectations whatsoever, as I haven’t read any of N. E. David’s work before, nor do I know anyone who read this book before me.
The only thing I can say I expected were beautiful sentences that would make me think about human’s life.
I can’t phraise Malaren for beautiful writing style, although I can say it had quality, especially when it comes to describing one’s feelings and actions in real life situations.
However, I have to say that, to me, Malaren sounded more like a slow general fiction then literary fiction.
When I was reading, I actually wondered if there is a genre that’s a hybrid between general and literary fiction. Because if there is, Malaren would definitely belong to that category.
The story takes place in a course of 6 months.
It talks about one man’s life after his wife dies.
In order to move on with his life, he goes to Sweden, in his in-laws house.
In those 6 months, I felt like almost nothing happened, and, even if literary fiction is familiar for slow pacing, this one lacked something to make it more interesting.
I didn’t see any change in main character at the end of the story, excpet the one that was inevitable.
Good thing about this piece of work is that it kept me up at night as I was (not even sure why) curious if something was going to happen (already).
The novel is composed of four parts, and the fourth one is the one where the story finally becomes somewhat interesting.
It has less then 300 pages, but it does not read fast.
It is written in first person.
Malaren: A Swedish Affair maybe isn’t the most interesting book out there, but I think it’s solid read and it would be a good choice for someone who wants to try to read literary fiction, as this one reads like a mix of two genres (general and literary fiction).
Lovely people from John Hunt Books publicity were kind enough and offered a physical copy of Malaren: A Swedish Affair to one lucky winner.
This giveaway is internatonal.